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Atari 5200 Console Information

Atari 5200

 

The Atari 5200 was Atari's attempted follow up to the Atari 2600. It was released in 1982, and featured a design similar to Atari's own 8 Bit line of computers. Atari also attempted to improve the controllers by making them analog, meaning the longer players held the joystick in one direction the faster the character the player was controlling moved. The controller also featured 360 degrees of movement (a step up from the 2600's 8 directions) and a first in the industry - a pause button. Unfortunately, the controllers had some problems. For one, they were not self-centering, meaning players had to manually move the joystick back to the center each time they wanted their character to stop. Another problem was that these controllers were considered very frail and easily broke. Atari also chose not to release exclusive "must have" games early in the consoles life, opting instead to bring out a bunch of updated 2600 titles (eventually Atari would reverse this decision, but it was too late in the system's life to make enough of a difference). One final thing that turned consumers off the console was that the console was not backwards compatible with Atari 2600 games at launch; an adapter was later released.

 

Atari

Type Console

Release Date November 1982 (NA)

Media Cartridge

Save Format None

Input Options 4 Atari 5200 Controllers

Special Features Cartridge Input

Power Switch

RF Output

Power Output

Units Sold

Top Selling Game

Variants Atari 5200 2 Port

Competitor(s) Intellivision

ColecoVision

Vectrex

 

Predecessor Atari 2600

Successor Atari 7800

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